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Comments about ‘Hamblin & Peterson: An ancient pagan prophecy of Christ?’

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Published: Saturday, Jan. 25 2014 9:00 p.m. MST

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jeaar
chile, 00

Thanks for this interesting article. What calls my attention is the use some Christians made of these pagan prophecies to support their claims about Christ. Are there any reference or quotes from some of these prophecies available online that you may consider more revealing?

skeptic
Phoenix, AZ

An interesting article that correlates man's persistent superstition to modern day, only the clergy cloth and housing has changed , but the message has remainder the same: if you don't understand it and you fear it, reduce it to a manageable superstition.

gmlewis
Houston, TX

Alma 29:8 "For behold, the Lord doth grant unto all nations, of their own nation and tongue, to teach his word, yea, in wisdom, all that he seeth fit that they should have; therefore we see that the Lord doth counsel in wisdom, according to that which is just and true."

Every person born into mortality receives knowledge and guidance through the Light of Christ, depending upon their receptivity and willingness to follow it. Even pagans or atheists can be thus inspired. Quietly, every soul is being led to prepare to receive the Savior, in spite of the traditions of culture and family that would lead otherwise.

Robert F. Smith
Provo, UT

You mention the Sibyl who was a daughter-in-law of Noah. That account is from the earliest and most certainly Jewish of the Sibylline Oracles, and tells of the sibyl Sambethe (Sibtu, Queen of Mari) who came into Egypt just after the Flood. The parallel with Book of Abraham Egyptus (Zeptah) is inescapable. See H. C. Youtie, "Sambathis," Harvard Theological Review, 37:213-217; Charlesworth, OTP, I:318, citing Rosenstiehl & Heinz, "De Sibtu, la reine de Mari, à Sambethe," Revue d'histoire et de philosophie religieuse, 52 (1972):13-15; Sibylline Oracles, Prologue:33; I:289, III:809,823-827.

samhill
Salt Lake City, UT

To "Skeptic" who, in referencing the reaction of some Christians to the words of the Sibylline Oracles, states, "...if you don't understand it and you fear it, reduce it to a manageable superstition." Your conclusion seems awfully descriptive of the reaction of most atheists I know to the idea of religion in general.

Was that your intention?

G L W8
SPRINGVILLE, UT

What connection did the Roman Sibylling Oracle have with the Greek Oracle at Delphi? We know that the Romans copied Greek theology. If I'm remembering correctly, the Oracle at Delphi used psychedelic enhancements to produce her visions. Point is, we have a very difficult task to determine with any degree of historical accuracy where the sources of most visionaries’ revelations originated. We can take the scriptural reference quoted from Alma 29:8 at its word, but we know from other scriptural references that the deceiver can also reveal himself as an angel of light. Best for LDS members and other interested parties to take D.&C. 93 into account, not only with the Apocrypha, but also with any extant historical account purporting to be revelation from God, or the Gods.

Johnny Moser
Thayne, WY

So let me get this right, we are calling a woman from the time of Noah, roughly 2950 BC/BCE, a "jewish" sibyl. Yet, the Jews are descendents of Judah, son of Jacob/Israel, who was born roughly 1800 BC/BCE. That same logic would indicate that the Prophets of Islam are also "jewish".

G L W8
SPRINGVILLE, UT

What connection did the Roman Sibylling Oracle have with the Greek Oracle at Delphi? We know that the Romans copied Greek theology. If I'm remembering correctly, the Oracle at Delphi used psychedelic enhancements to produce her visions. Point is, we have a very difficult task to determine with any degree of historical accuracy where the sources of most visionaries’ revelations originated. We can take the scriptural reference quoted from Alma 29:8 at its word, but we know from other scriptural references that the deceiver can also reveal himself as an angel of light. Best for LDS members and other interested parties to take D.&C. 93 into account, not only with the Apocrypha, but also with any extant historical account purporting to be revelation from God, or the Gods.

Craig Clark
Boulder, CO

One can authenticate purported prophecy by interpreting known events to fit the paradigm. What I find problematical about the idea of prophecy is its implication that the future already exists in some form. There are Christians who repudiate Calvin’s predestination while never questioning the idea of prophecy. The only explanation I can see is human need to believe that God already knows what’s going to happen next. So much for belief in free will.

kvnsmnsn
Springville, UT

Craig Clark posted:

=What I find problematical about the idea of prophecy is its implication that
=the future already exists in some form. There are Christians who repudiate
=Calvin’s predestination while never questioning the idea of prophecy. The only
=explanation I can see is human need to believe that God already knows what’s
=going to happen next. So much for belief in free will.

It is possible to know some things will happen in the future without knowing all the things that will happen in the future, so a belief in effective prophecy does not preclude free will.

Kevin S

G L W8
SPRINGVILLE, UT

Craig Clark, interpreting prophecy or any other historical or folk-notion by known events is in fact possible. But such interpretations are temporary conclusions at best. With new historical/archaeological discoveries, the paradigm and its concomitant conclusion changes. That's one of the problems with associating conclusions discovered through empiricism, i.e., the scientific method, as absolute truth. They are and will always remain, open-ended facts or theories.
P.S. Please pardon my previous duplicated posts. Cyberspace has its own problems!

Clifton Palmer McLendon
Gilmer, TX

Even before I became a Latter-day Saint, I believed that, inasmuch as Jesus died for everyone, there was a possibility that prophets other than those recorded in the Bible might have looked forward to His coming.

When I read in Third Nephi that He visited people on the American continent, I was not surprised, nor would it surprise me someday to learn that, besides the Jews and the Nephites and the Lost Ten Tribes, He visited other people as well.

Craig Clark
Boulder, CO

G L W8,

"....That's one of the problems with associating conclusions discovered through empiricism, i.e., the scientific method, as absolute truth. They are and will always remain, open-ended facts or theories...."
______________________________

Let me clear up where I stand on that. No method of arriving at absolute truth is without limitations, be it by faith or by reason. No one who follows either path should yield to the human temptation to think that we’re so smart we’ve got it all figured out.

portlander
Arlington, WA

The problem with being omniscient, omnipresent and omnipotent, is that we, as humans are not! So, God has promised that He will reveal Himself to mankind using various forms and at varying levels of understanding, based upon the needs of the people (His children).

We have been told to seek knowledge, learning and understanding throughout our lives, and to seek inspiration wherever it can be found. When we do this, and we have a hefty measure of the Spirit of the Lord with us, we can then "see" deeper and receive understanding beyond our own mortal insight. All for our benefit and enlightenment.

(Please see 2nd post.)

portlander
Arlington, WA

(2nd Post)
In our finite/mortal understanding, it is difficult to reconcile the abilities of our Father in Heaven, within our limited sphere. We sometimes claim that because we do not, or cannot understand, that there is some limitation to God, or that He does not even exist. But one thing that I have come to realize of late, is that He is the absolute best chess player in the universe. He knows each of us, intimately, upon worlds without end! He knows every move that we could ever make in any situation in which we could find ourselves at any time in our lives. And because He knows "all things", nothing can surprise Him, catch Him off-guard, etc. And because of His infinite ability to "know", He can make His plans for the eternities and know for certain that they will "come to pass".

Robert F. Smith
Provo, UT

For Johnny Moser:
Bear in mind two things:
(1) Jews consider even Father Abraham to have been a "Jew" (and St Paul considers himself a "Jew," even though he is from the tribe of Benjamin).
(@) The Sibylline Oracles were composed from around the 2nd century BC to the 3rd century AD, so that the earliest oracles were Jewish doesn't mean that they actually date back to Noah, but rather that a great many older traditions are mixed in without regard to pure sequential, historical time. As Hugh Nibley never tired of pointing out, such traditions continually reappear in separate cultures throughout the ancient Near East.

Scott Vanatter
Fairfax, VA

In President Howard W. Hunter’s talk “The Gospel—A Global Faith” of October General Conference 1991 he quoted: Elder Orson F. Whitney

“Providence is over all. . .He holds the nations in the hollow of his hand; He is using not only his covenant people, but other peoples as well, to consummate a work, stupendous, magnificent, and altogether too arduous for this little handful of Saints to accomplish by and of themselves. . . .

“All down the ages men bearing the authority of the Holy Priesthood —patriarchs, prophets, apostles and others, have officiated in the name of the Lord, doing the things that he required of them; and outside the pale of their activities other good and great men, not bearing the Priesthood, but possessing profundity of thought, great wisdom, and a desire to uplift their fellows, have been sent by the Almighty into many nations, to give them, not the fullness of the Gospel, but that portion of truth that they were able to receive and wisely use.” -- Conference Report, April 1921, p.32-33.

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